A4 Conference proceedings

From networks to ecosystems: redefining inter-organizational transparency

Publication Details
Authors: Ylä-Kujala Antti, Marttonen-Arola Salla, Kärri Timo, Liyanage Jayantha P.
Publication year: 2018
Language: English
Title of parent publication: Proceedings of Maintenance Performance Measurement and Management (MPMM): Conference 2018
Start page: 24
End page: 31
Number of pages: 8
JUFO-Level of this publication: 0
Open Access: Not known


Servitization and digitalization are two forces currently restructuring the industrial landscape. The next step for manufacturers becoming service providers is to take advantage of the servitization potential of big data that is generated by smart connected assets enabled by Internet of Things (IoT) technologies. As the concept of interdependency is now applied to the animate (i.e. organizations populated by individuals) and the inanimate (i.e. smart connected assets as industry’s installed base), business networks are shading into complex business ecosystems. In order to guarantee effective service provision, organizations should be willing to share the above-mentioned big data, although such disclosure has been repeatedly proven as problematic in the past. The aims of the paper are twofold; (1) to map and categorize the reasons for failed transparency (i.e. issues and barriers) by conducting a literature review, and (2) to understand through multiple case studies how IoT is able to support information disclosure.

Five types of issues and barriers are identified; (1) Asymmetrical power relations and opportunism, (2) Inter- personal relations and individuals’ traits, (3) Poor commitment and inadequate relational support, (4) Insufficiency of data arising from methods/systems, and (5) Weak incentives and unresolved benefit sharing. The findings from the two case ecosystems indicate that IoT resolves each problem either directly or indirectly. As far as the theoretical implications are concerned, the paper provides a systematic listing of reasons for failed transparency and carries a suggestion that scientific discussion on inter-organizational relationships should focus on business ecosystems as the concept of business network is no longer congruent with the state-of-the-practice. The introduction of IoT plays a significant economic role in both case ecosystems, which should be of interest to managers and other practitioners.

Last updated on 2018-22-08 at 12:25